I do not exactly know if it’s a product of my imagination or a perspective temporarily invaded of emotions that will change later, but I have the painful feeling that society as a whole – with its always good exceptions – is losing its hearing. I believe we’re just becoming deaf by leaps and bounds and not because there is a pandemic that is physically eating away our hearing organs, but because it seems to be increasing, if not completely conscious and voluntary, at least predictable, the marked tendency to NOT listen: not to the neighbor, or the wind, or the silence … or to ourselves.
Last night I saw a TV spot which exalted the “value” of bringing “our sound” all day, not knowing what is happening in our environment, in acoustic terms. It was an advertising of some headphones that isolated the outside “noise” so the user could listen, without interruption, the music of the iPod and then keep happily immersed in his world. What a message ! … “Nothing else matters but your own sound.”
It’s important to clarify that I listen music while I run, thereby ensuring that the anguish for counting miles completely vanishes and the enthusiastic rhythms of good melodies, give me impetus to move forward without hesitating. I try, however, that after completion of the journey, my ears and mind enjoy again the everyday noises and environment: my child’s laugh, the story of a good friend, a dried leaf I step when walking and the advice of my mother, among other acoustic wonders.
A few days ago I had the pleasure of sharing lunch with a good friend. On the table were just our food and the positive desire to talk. The conversation was opened with caring and genuine questions to each other: “How are you?”, “Tell me about your next trip”, “how did the work project of your husband go?”, “How have you been feeling these days? “… Everything, absolutely everything, was naturally built in an expression of “ I’m all ears ” or what is better:” I care and that’s why I’m here”. The originally planned 60 minutes doubled without even noticing it, probably by the mutual delight of seeing that the other was attentive, interested, focused, practicing the famous but decreasingly applied here and now. There were no distractions; no attempts at disruption, there were not calls or chats, much less glimpses to social networks. We simply returned to the basic principles of GIVING.
Once we finished the enjoyable lunch, I went home with a smile and a satisfactory digestion, in all areas. I felt really good.
Here is my simple message, of course just expressed in one of the various forms by many with the same concern, since I have not discovered anything, much less pioneered what I am saying here, but I do it because every day I realize more and more about the exquisite consequences of it: give your ear … and by it I mean your legitimate interest in all those you care. Listen to them and do not act like you do, because they notice. Ask them how they are, ask about their family, their health, their work, their life plans, their hobbies … show how much you care and receive no more response than a sweet smile that truly thanks and an eagerness wish to keep you close, forever.
Receive my hug … and my ear.